Main Street group considers downtown Sandusky building rehab

For Sale: Building in prime waterfront location. Needs TLC.
Andy Ouriel
Jan 11, 2013

Sandusky Main Street Association has first right of refusal for the building at 109 E. Water St., an abandoned structure wedged alongside Water Street Bar and Grille.

In all, the association spent about $34,000 to help fund a building analysis, perform minor construction and preliminary design work.

"We have the first right to buy the building from the owners. If it's deemed feasible, we'll move forward with it," association executive director John Lippus said. "It would be a complete building restoration."

For more on this potential renovation project and its costs, pick up a copy of Friday's Register.



Why? Downtown will never be what it was...

The Bizness

Central Business Districts are the core of cities, without a central area for people to congregate and mingle cities die and do not function as well.

People my age appreciate having bars/restaurants/shopping all in one centralized area rather than the sprawl and head aches that are 250.

I think it would be great if they allowed downtown to have open containers on the weekend. So you could walk from bar to bar with a beer. Only is restricted areas of course.

BW1's picture

A viable economy requires more than getting people drunk.


While this may have been true in an old economy now, given the current economic structure in modern time, you do not need this centralized area.

How many people "mingle" in downtown Sandusky, compared to how many people get drunk and fight... The fact that the commenter thinks that allowing open containers on the street shows just how deeply rooted in reality he/she may be.

The Bizness

Have you been out in downtown Sandusky on a Friday night? it is full of young professionals. The open container would make it more friendly to tourist....I am making this statement from areas in New Orleans, and Louisville that enacted open container districts and it works great there. Plus it can bring in more revenue by booking people who break the rules.


That would be amazing!!

Phil Packer

Tear it down and put in motorcycle parking.

The Bizness

Looking at it from the bay side that building appears to be in need of a lot of structural work with the sagging windows and such...I am not an engineer though and I hope that something happens to it that makes it a functioning property again.

I always thought a couple story bar and restaurant would be cool with a roof top bar.


They tried that in the Flats in Cleveland. Look what happened to that place. It's not all about bars and eateries.

The Bizness

You need to live work and play in one spot...they need shops and living as well.


Contact Donald Trump and offer it to him for $1.00.

"If you build it they will come" is a great line from a fantasy movie, but in reality ya tend to go broke with that kinda thinking.

Due dilligence is the watch word - caveat emptor.

The Bizness

I don't really want to start an argument on this but there are a few instances where that line worked...

Look at Disneyworld, Cedar Point, Las Vegas, resorts, Kalahari, and all manufacturing...people built it and people came...


@ The Bizness:

You're comparing this particular situation to your list? Circumstances for many of those was completely different.

We're back to: Due diligence and serious market research.

The restaurant trade has one of the highest casualty rates - not for the "faint of heart."

I wouldn’t invest $1 USD until I saw the plan.

I can certainly appreciate your enthusiasm, but dreams without "feet" are just dreams.

The Bizness

I understand your point, I am not saying it is market feasible, but rather offering ideas. I do not have the money to do these projects so I throw them out to people hoping it sparks interest. I am an inventor, and am always thinking of business ideas, sadly I do not have the capitol yet at my young age.

BW1's picture

And that's the rub. If wishes were wings, beggars would fly. Since the investment isn't happening, it's clear that those who DO have the capital don't agree with you, and since they GOT that capital by being right about such things more often than they were wrong, their choices carry more weight than that of yet another wet behind the ears wannabe who's out to tell us how everything that came before him was wrong.

The Bizness

I just see a lot of potential in the downtown area that I guess most people posting here don't. The city of Sandusky is a tourism hot spot and our city center needs to look like Crocker...bustling with shops, food, and offices, as well as condos. Why build a whole new artificial city center like Crocker Park, when the infrastructure is already in place?

You can disagree with me, but I will do my due diligence and when I make enough money I will invest in the downtown area.

BW1's picture

Call us when that happens. Until then, those whose PROVEN investment performance gives them credibility seem to disagree.


First stop will be the city to ask for taxpayer funding and any other funding they can load up on.


You are soo right John will beg the city for funding and tax credits and in the end it will be the Keller Building all over. I have seen this show before.


Towards the end of The Flats, they tried strip joints. After that, the place went. May as well have been flooded by the Cuyahoga River.

The Bizness

The flats are currently being turned into a mixed use live/work/play area. It is a gorgeous plan.


A gorgeous plan that according to the Plain Dealer, lacks the private investment capital to go much further. Their suggestion was to add another tax to county residents to continue on with the boondoggle. A mixed use area in the flats will be great for the swinger crowd since they do have a club right their in the flats that caters to the lifestyle.

The Bizness

There is a ton of private investment going on... not sure where you are coming from with this statement.

BW1's picture

A georgeous plan that will eventually repeat the district's history. The problem is, the "play" part appeals primarily to the immature magpie dictates of fashion - what's de rigeur among the target upscale market. What people don't seem to realize is that the less desirable markets imitate the tastes of the more desirable, and "play" venues, especially those strongly dependent upon alcohol sales, inevitably deteriorate as the socio-economic level of their clientele drops. The CLE warehouse district is on that path right now.

The Bizness

I guess we just completely disagree, the Flats East plan is a multi use of living, working, and playing all in one area. The way cities are supposed to be built, I don't really get why you think that the plan is all about "play" because it isn't. Downtown Cleveland is having a renaissance, along with Ohio City, Tremont, University Circle, and many other neighborhoods. All because they offer a live, work, play atmosphere that my generation seeks, rather than the suburbia our parents wanted.


This building is totally beyond repair. Have looked at purchasing a number of downtown buildings. This the worst. It should be demolished and a park put there. The building is worth nothing, the only thing of value here is the lot.

The Bizness

It is in very bad shape...a park or new construction should be put in its place unless people are willing to spend huge amounts of money on it.


I agree with you 110% on this. I looked at this particular building a few years back and it is a mess.


There are times that we must give up on nostalgia and proceed with future endeavors. Many downtowns and uptowns in this Register and Reflector area can benefit from this. And! I don't mean malls and strip malls. This is not a circus. People live here and count on having a decent place to work and have something viable to look forward to.


Where does Main Street get its funding?